A new California law makes commercial computer technicians mandatory reporters in cases of child pornography. The bill, AB 1817, was signed into law by Governor Jerry Brown this week.
Here is the crux of the bill, according to a press release from the CA K.I.D.S. Coalition:
Commercial computer techicians will now be required to report child sexual abuse images if they discover them during their normal course of work.
The last time this law was updated, it applied to employees in photo and video processing labs. With the dawn of digital media, not only was the old law outdated, but barely scratched the surface of a now-booming digital trade in sexual exploitation images of children.
Had a law like this been in effect in Kansas City, numerous children victimized by Fr. Shawn Ratigan could have been saved from abuse.
Now, if computer techs run across child abuse images (child porn) on a computer, they won’t grapple with the questions of “should I? or shouldn’t I?”
Hopefully, the word will get out and commercial computer techs will feel safe and empowered to protect kids and report abuse, just like photo lab employees have done in the past.
You can read the full text of the new law here.